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Olympic target for J P Tobin

Kiwi board sailor JP Tobin won the national champs recently but now has a much bigger goal to achieve.

Tobin has been number one in the world twice – that's also the number of times he has missed out on qualifying for the Olympics.

He will try again this year but New Zealand gets just one spot, so Tobin will go up against Olympic champion Tom Ashley.

“It’s about as simple as that but either of us, we've both got to perform well, so it’s not just enough to beat each other, we've got to be stepping up and starting to show we're the contender.”

Helping Tobin out is 2000 Olympic bronze medallist Aaron McIntosh.

The Kiwi is now coaching top Dutch sailor Dorian van Rijsselberge and Tobin is on board as a training partner.

They are all on board with the latest training device – the stand up paddle board.

“For us it’s new,” McIntosh says. “We just implement it into our cross training… seen some dramatic changes in what’s happening on the water physically and technically; really good cross over which is interesting to see.”

Tobin says the action is quite similar to windsurfing.

“It places a lot of load on our backs in particular and so what we're finding with this is its putting a nice condition into our backs and abs.”

Now 33, Tobin is keen to do whatever it takes to make his Olympic qualifying campaign a success.

“I can see it being my last,” he says. “Never say never but I’m getting a little bit on and I want to move on with other things.

“But I’m more enthusiastic about the sport than ever and I'm focussed and driven to get to London and hopefully step up on the top step.”

He'll take his first step towards that at qualifying regattas in June and December.

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